Rochambeau Bridge Eastbound Traffic Shift Planned
A shift in traffic flow within the Rochambeau Bridge Reconstruction Project (RBRP) is scheduled for Sunday night.
According to an announcement from the RBRP team, there will be a traffic shift at the Rochambeau Bridge — the dual span that carries I-84 over Lake Zoar at the Newtown-Southbury town line — on Sunday evening, June 4. The announcement did not specify the time the shift will occur.
In the case of inclement weather, the shift will be scheduled for the following night.
Traffic on I-84 East will be placed in its permanent alignment on final pavement across the new I-84 East bridge.
The traffic shift will take traffic off the current Westbound (WB) crossover and enable the completion of milling, paving and line striping of the final course of asphalt on the westbound bridge/roadway.
The shift of westbound traffic into its permanent alignment on final pavement across the new westbound bridge will occur sometime in July.
The rehabilitation of the Rochambeau Bridge, which consists of the full replacement of Bridges 01218 and 04180 (collectively called the “Rochambeau Bridge”), was awarded in May 2020 to Middlesex Corporation at a cost of $52,873,000.
Recent work has included the completion of metal beam rail on the eastbound bridge, restoring access roads using material from the temporary reuse soil area (TRSA), continued installation of rip-rap for slope protection, and completion of parapet concrete sealing and caulking.
Crews also began asphaltic plug joints on the Center Street bridge, which carries traffic to the south of the Rochambeau spans over the street in Sandy Hook; and continued to monitor and control environmental best management practices (BMPs).
The original contract completion is November 2023, which the contractor is reportedly still on track to finish on or before.
The Rochambeau Bridge was one of two spans identified in September 2018 in a statewide report on structurally deficient bridges. The report identified the eastbound span of the Rochambeau Bridge as one of two of the top ten most heavily traveled structurally deficient bridges in Fairfield County.
Kevin Nursick, director of communications for Connecticut DOT, told The Newtown Bee that year that it is normal and expected for each bridge to reach a point where it has become structurally deficient.
“This is not a safety issue, but a benchmark point at which the bridge’s condition triggers an encompassing project to either rehabilitate or replace it,” he said.
Although both bridges are referred to locally as the Rochambeau Bridge, the westbound span was renamed in 2009 to honor a late Newtown resident and Connecticut State Trooper.
Lt Thomas Carney, commanding officer of Troop L in Litchfield, was struck and killed by a tractor-trailer on December 6, 1982, while standing on the shoulder of I-84 near Exit 15 in Southbury with a stopped motorist. Lt Carney was on his way home, assisting the motorist.
Managing Editor Shannon Hicks can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.